Tuesday, June 24, 2008
The Preparation Begins!!!
So, summer is finally here, and with it LOTS of STUFF!!! I'm really busy preparing musically, scales and pieces and studies for the Galway masterclass! You know, I don't think I'll ever have my scales perfect. They are crazy, really they are. I'm working on them with the tuning CD, backwards, forwards, tops, tails, tonic to tonic, random modes, improvisation in a key, ANYTHING that might make them stick into my head, and yet, invariably, when I come back the next day to work on them, my head feels empty and I just have to wonder if everything I did the day before was all in my imagination. Slowly but surely, however, they are coming, I've got scales up to 4 sharps and 3 flats down and comfortable, and I'm working on 5 sharps and 4 flats. Fortunately, there are some that I learned well before, such as Bb major (thank you, Grade 7 school band!) and D major (I have a random affinity to that scale) and, because of that, their relative minors come easy. At least that. :)
I think I've settled on performing the J.S. Bach Sonata 1035 for Sir James, which means now I'm working on memorization. The annoying bit is that my ears know the piece inside out and backwards, but my fingers don't necessarily, and while my interval recognition is good, it's not THAT good, that I can hear it in my head and just always play it perfectly. *sigh* So many things to work on and learn. It's nice to be playing it again though, I'm enjoying it.
I'm also working crazy on studies, (etudes; tough music that trains specific techniques) brushing up old ones, speeding up new ones. Extra double and triple-tonguing practice, and of course, the scales come in really handy there. This past week I've just felt like I finally know what I'm doing when I get to practicing. Before last Wednesday I was feeling crazy and all over the place, so much that I really didn't accomplish anything at lesson. Jen was very gracious, and let me cry and feel sorry for myself. Haha...not smart, but still okay once in a while. The sunshine is making me feel much more together. :) Yay Summer!
I've also been figuring out what I need to bring and pack, how I'm going to pack it, what I'll wear to travel, and all that great stuff. I practically need another suitcase for all my music related things. I think it will be really fun, because I'll be bringing my flute in my carry-on, and I just can't WAIT to see the look on the security officers' faces when they see this big metal thing in my bag on their little view screen. "Please take this out ma'am, what is it?" "A flute!" And if they ask me to play it (which they have been known to do, evidentially) I'll die laughing. Should be interesting, to say the least. :)
Life is full, even aside from trip planning, as I finally got around to taking my Standard First Aid this past weekend (passed with a 99% yay!!!), and so I'm now certified to operate an AED (Automated External Defibrillator) and all sorts of first-aid-y things. A lot of it I knew from my previous lifeguarding courses, but it's still fantastic to have, especially going away like this. Now if someone falls off the Colosseum and is unconscious and not breathing and has no pulse, I'm up-to-date on what to do. It's crazy how often they change the CPR protocol, I mean, really!
I've been volunteering like crazy at the pool with swim lessons, and I now have done 29 hours since last summer! Pretty awesome! Can't wait to make it 30. I'm still teaching piano and flute right up until we go, as well, so that kind of chops up my weeks. I wish it wasn't Tuesday and Friday. It would be a ton easier if it were all on one day. I think I'll have to follow Rosemary's lead and consolidate my teaching days in the fall (hopefully I'll have more students to consolidate!). Next week I'm hoping to make it to the International Choral Kathaumixw, (Google it) at least for a day or so, and that should be really amazing, and also next Saturday I have an arts fest to go to. Should be...interesting... to say the very least. ;D I'm actually really excited, but I'm sure there will be plenty of colour. :)
In any case, this post has been far too long already. Let me know if you'd prefer shorter posts. I think I'm going to do a mass email now and let everyone who might not know about this blog know, because I think I have some friends and family who will want to peek while I'm gone.
I assure you, these posts will get more interesting, as soon as I leave, I'm sure. I'm just in a sharing details mood today, and really, it's just day-to-day life.
Love and peace to you all.
And just as a word of encouragement, stop and smell the roses today, (or pick the berries, or stare at the sky, or daydream in the forest...) even if it means tramping through the woods to do so. :) Let me know how it went, little moments of beauty always brighten my day.